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“Latin-Influenced Sushi Bar” SAKERUM opens Monday “fuses the restrained elegance and vibrant energy of Asian and Latin cultures”

2204 14th Street, NW

From a press release:

“Sakerum, a new sushi bar, Asian-Latin restaurant and cocktail lounge from Stephanos Andreou, will open just blocks away from the intersection of 14th and U Street (2204 14th St NW) on Monday, August 22.

The two-story resto-lounge fuses the restrained elegance and vibrant energy of Asian and Latin cultures. The atmosphere is modeled, in part, on the traditional Japanese concept of the izakaya, a warm, welcoming gastropub — tinged with the flair of a Latin lounge.

Sakerum’s menu of sushi & sashimi and Latin-inspired Asian dishes will offer an exciting blend of flavors and cultures based on innovative recipes. The 3,600-square-foot Sakerum features bars on both floors in addition to a private dining space and a 90-person retractable rooftop on the second floor.

The colorful sushi bar, located on the restaurant’s first floor, is led by Chef Khan Gayabazar, whose sushi, sashimi and appetizer offerings are big on both flavor and creativity. The Mar y Tierra Roll — sushi made with Maine lobster tail and scorched Miyazaki Wagyu beef — and Yaki Tako, tender grilled octopus brushed with lemon oil and served with orange-mango picante, are just a few of Sakerum’s unique dishes.”

The first floor of Sakerum on 14th Street. Photo by Farrah Skeiky
The first floor of Sakerum. Photo by Farrah Skeiky

Beverage consultant Gina Chersevani leads Sakerum’s cocktail program, which will use fresh sugar cane for cocktails and drink flights. Chersevani’s cheekily-titled drinks include the “Wandering Samurai,” made with sake, Flor de Cana, yuzu and bitters, topped with 6-piece sashimi and the “Pirates Creed,” rum, coconut, pineapple, Yuzu and nutmeg.

sake sushi drink
The Wandering Samurai cocktail features sake, Flor de Cana, yuzu and bitters, topped with 6-piece sashimi. Photo by Farrah Skeiky

Sakerum’s general manager Justin Cho, whose family has been in the restaurant business for his entire life, has more than a decade of experience working in and managing restaurants in Washington, D.C., Michigan and Washington state. Cho will bring his lifelong passion for all things culinary to the table at Sakerum.

The interior of Sakerum highlights textiles from both worlds, combining minimalist Asian sensibilities with whimsical art, found objects and gilded bird cages. Because the Sakerum concept celebrates two of the most iconic spirits representing both cultures — sake and rum — the elements of the restaurant’s namesake are used in the polished rice and sugarcane motifs found in the logo and interior decor.

Sakerum's rooftop features a retractable ceiling. Photo by Farrah Skeiky copy
Sakerum’s rooftop features a retractable ceiling. Photo by Farrah Skeiky

“I’ve always loved Asian and Latin cuisines and cultures, so bringing them together to create Sakerum was a no-brainer for me,” says owner Andreou, whose wife and partner Constandina Economides’ family owned and operated former D.C. dining institution Blackie’s. “Sakerum is dedicated to bringing out the best of both worlds and we think guests will appreciate how thoughtfully we have paired these amazing cultures together with our outstanding food, drinks and decor.”

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